I put the new top on the car today. It appears to be too small. Now enough length front to back or side to side. Am I missing something here? Side to side it is about 64 inches wide. I think it needs to be more like 68 inches wide.
In the back you can see it will not cover the tacks and staples on the rear bow. In the front there does not seem to be enough to fabric to properly attach the front.
Something is wrong. If I remember correctly, the "Model T FordOwner" had pics with measurements that I referred to often when doing my 15. You top material should cover the wood, BUT, is the material too small, or the bows too tall, or wrong ones? I've seen people buy a set of the wooden bows and whittle the ends to fit into the steel, then think their top material is wrong size--when they get the wood to fit correctly, all is fine. Start backtracking and see if anything was done wrong up to where you are at now.
I checked and it's on page 155 for a 2-man touring top. I've got a new printer and new laptop and don't know how to scan it and post it here, but, I can give you some measurements to check, but, it would be better if someone could post a scan of the drawing.
Royce - you win first prize.
I pulled out the book and found the dimensions on page 155 like you stated.
These are probably the original bows for the car. They are not new and looked very old when I installed the bow covering, but the wood is in very good shape.
The rear curtain went on just fine and fits well.
If I look at the diagram above at point 'B' I get 26 x 2 = 52 inches across the top. Just behind that I see 22 inches to bottom of top and 30 3/4 inches to bottom of bow. That is 9 inches on the side x 2 = 18. 52 + 18 = 70. I only have 64 inches. Definitely not cut correctly. I also know that from front to back I have the above measurements, so the top has to be cut too short.
Will have to call Cartouche next week to see what they can do.
I don't have the Model T Ford Owner Book, but does this have a similar top drawing for a 1912 Touring?
I think you can use the drawing to make sure your bows and irons are set correctly, but you can't use it to dimension top material width.
At point B you reference, the linear dimension to bow is 26.5 inches, but thinking in three dimensions, at the outermost point, the material has already started to curve around the radius of the bow.
If I were you, I'd carefully check the bow dimensions, assuring they are correct and reworking if they're not. Mark center lines, attaching top front and back at center lines. Then, get the top out in a hot sun, and see if it doesn't stretch to fit. Not sure, but it appears on the back bow that you've attached one side and tried to pull to the other side, not the correct way to install.
Classtique Upholstery is the only one for me!
Looks like the top deck is made wrong. The lady in Minnesota makes great stuff by the way..........
David - I have not attached anything yet. It was out in the sun but I do not think it will stretch that much.
I will write to Cartouche and see what they say.
I might end up having to make a call to Minnesota.
I have both of Vince's videos on one man top and two man top. I also watched Elizabeth install a top on the Classique web site.
We shall see.
who is Vince? I'd be interested in the video as I need to do my 1912 top.
Stay away from Cartouche, that's the bottom line, tops are hard enough to install without getting one that is wrong in the first place! I make my own tops, and it is not as easy as it seems. I feel sorry for Dave having to go through this. Classtique is a lot closer to you than New York!
There is no way that top will stretch enough to fit. By the time it is stretched that tight it would rival the high "C" on a 5 string banjo. It is wrong, simply wrong, call Cartouche don't write.
I have installed 20 some top kits, from different suppliers over the years, Cartouche is not my favorite.
You may have a main deck for a Model T one man top if it is about 88 inches long. I post this drawing just to show how the one man top is different.
The main deck should only be about 88 inches long to cover the Model T one man irons and allow for trim front and rear.
It is flatter and comes over the sides less too. I just measured a main deck out of a kit I have to put on a one man top.
It is a good idea to check the fit of the main deck and rear curtain at bow #4 before you tack the rear curtain down.
The main deck on a two man top is 88 inches (87-11/16" in the drawing above) when finished. You need about 8 inches to make the match at bow #4 and have trim front and rear. Should be about 96 inches when you get the correct one. Let us know.
Your rear curtain, straps and pads look great!
Ken in Texas
Thank you for all that information. I went out to check the fit. The rear bow #4 overhangs the rear of the car about an inch, so that is correct. The distance from the windshield to the rear bow is 88 inches, so that is also correct.
The big issue is side to side. The bows are 53 inches wide. From the top of the bow down enough to cover the sides is about 10 inches. Allow for curvature and you get about 68-70 inches. The top I have is only 64 inches. Way to short.
I think you are correct that I must have a deck for a one man top. The deck I have is only 93 inches, and you figured about 96 inches. That must be part of the reason I cannot cover the front and rear bows with enough material. Thank you for noticing that.
Thank you also for your compliment on the rear curtain, although I have to admit I did not follow the history books. I put leather straps in the rear bow instead of webbing. I like the idea of leather in front and back and it looks just fine.
The car is off to have the engine installed. It now has a new scat crank.
I spoke with Jim at Cartouche. They are willing to make me a new top with additional material so it will fit better. All I have to do is send them the old one.
I also had a friend stop over that has installed tops. He thinks the problem might be in the pads, and if I can reduce the stuffing inside the pads or replace it with a different material, then the top might fit. Now I have to wait until the engine is installed.
However, I have to give credit where credit is due and Mac's is willing to make good.
I doubt if the problem is too much stuffing in the pads. Usually, the problem is not enough stuffing.
I have to bring this topic back up again. I spoke with Jim Monczynski at Mac's and he advised me to send the top to him and they would make me a new one. They followed up with what they promised. No questions asked. 2 weeks later I received a new top and installed it on the car today. Last warm day of the year. I made a few mistakes, but I have a top and it looks good enough for me.
Mac's did everything I asked of them and did not charge me to ship out a new top. I need to use this opportunity to give Jim and Mac's a gold star for all their help.
Thanks to all of you as well for your advice.
Glad to hear everything worked out!